Memorial Sloan Kettering Medical Oncologist Deb Schrag

Deb Schrag, MD, MPH

Medical Oncologist

Titles

Chair, Department of Medicine

Clinical Expertise

Gastrointestinal Oncology; Colon, Rectal, Anal Cancer

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Mon–Fri,
Accepted Insurance Providers

Dr. Schrag accepts the following list of insurance providers. Select your insurance provider to see more details.

Aetna

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with Aetna HMO, POS, and PPO plans. Aetna does not include us in any of the plans you can purchase through the insurance exchanges or through Medicare. Please ask your insurance if you need a one-time referral. MSK has an agreement with the Aetna Transplant Program for all Aetna's commercial products.

Blue Cross Blue Shield

In New York State

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield (Wellpoint) of New York HMO, EPO, PPO, and POS plans, with the following exceptions:

  • Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield does not include us in any of the plans you can buy through the insurance exchanges.
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering is not an in-network provider for Empire's Medicare Managed Care plan known as Mediblue).
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Blue Cross Blue Shield.

In New Jersey

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with some Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey plans for individuals, families, and small businesses. For example, the PPO plan is in-network with our Manhattan locations. 

Horizon Blue Cross HMO is only in-network with our Basking Ridge, Bergen and Monmouth locations. It does not allow access to our Manhattan facilities.

Horizon Blue Cross PPO is in network with our Basking Ridge, Bergen, Monmouth and Manhattan locations.

OMNIA Plans: Tier I EPO based plan policy is only in-network with our Basking Ridge, Bergen and Monmouth locations and does not allow access to our Manhattan sites. Tier II EPO is only in-network with our Manhattan sites if it is a blue-card plan (there would be a suitcase logo indicating PPO on the front of the card).

Other plans may only be in-network at our Basking Ridge, Bergen or Monmouth locations.

Outside New York State and New Jersey

Some, but not all, Blue Cross Blue Shield plans outside of New York and New Jersey include Memorial Sloan Kettering as an in-network provider. Contact your insurance to find out if your plan provides in-network access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.

Health Insurance Exchanges

We understand that there may be many complexities involved with insurance coverage purchased through the health exchange network of the Affordable Care Act. We’re here to help. If you have questions about how your care will be covered by an insurance provider, or need help navigating a change in coverage, please call us at 646-227-3378; if you are not a resident of New York, you can call us at 866-248-1274. Our team is here to listen to your concerns and assist you in any way we can. We want our care to be as accessible and affordable for as many people as possible.

CIGNA

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with CIGNA's HMO, POS, and PPO plans. CIGNA does not include us in any of the plans you can buy through the insurance exchanges.

  • If you are a New York State resident: Please ask your insurance if you need a one-time referral.
  • If you live outside of New York State: Please ask your insurance if you have in-network access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.
EmblemHealth (including GHI, HIP, ConnectiCare, and Vytra)

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with EmblemHealth’s PPO, EPO, POS, HMO plans and Medicare plans. Emblem Health does not include us in any of its Select Care network plans. EmblemHealth includes GHI, HIP, Vytra, and ConnecticCare (in NYS Only). You must bring a referral from your Emblem primary care doctor to your first appointment.

HealthFirst

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with HealthFirst’s commercial products; these commercial products are not purchased on the insurance exchanges.

HealthSmart

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with HealthSmart’s Accel, HSPC, and HPO networks.

Humana

Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Humana.

Interlink Health Services

Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Interlink Health Services.

Lifetrac

Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Lifetrac.

MagnaCare

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider for all MagnaCare health plans except those products you can buy through the insurance exchanges.

Medicaid

New York State Medicaid covers physician and hospital services at Memorial Sloan Kettering. Patients are responsible for co-payments. We also have contractual relationships involving Medicaid Managed Care plans.

Medicare

Hospital and physician services at Memorial Sloan Kettering are covered by standard Medicare insurance. You are responsible for co-insurance and deductible costs. 

In New York: Memorial Sloan Kettering’s New York locations are in-network with the Emblem Medicare Advantage Plans.

In New Jersey: Memorial Sloan Kettering’s  New Jersey locations in Basking Ridge, Bergen and Monmouth are in-network with the Horizon Medicare Advantage Plan. This plan is not accepted for care provided at MSK’s New York locations.

If you are enrolled in any other Medicare Advantage plan, please contact your insurance carrier to determine your benefits and coverage at Memorial Sloan Kettering since your access may be limited.

Multiplan/Beech Street/PHCS

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with some Multiplan/Beech Street/PHCS plans. Contact your insurance carrier to find out if your plan provides in-network access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.

Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Multiplan.

Multiple Insurance Plans

If you are covered by more than one insurance plan, you will want to determine your benefits from both plans. First, you need to determine which one is your primary insurance provider by contacting your employee benefits office or your insurance carriers. After you find out which is your primary insurance provider, you should then contact your insurance carrier to determine if you have access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.

MVP

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with some MVP plans. Contact your insurance carrier to find out if your plan provides in-network access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.

New York State Employee Health Insurance Plan (Empire Plan)

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider for New York State employees who have enrolled in UnitedHealthcare's Cancer Resource Services. If you have the Empire Plan, you should call Cancer Resources Services at 866-936-6002 to verify and enroll in this coverage.

Oscar

Memorial Sloan Kettering is in-network with Oscar’s Circle Plus Network, a part of its Small Group Broad line that is offered only to select small business groups. Oscar does not include Memorial Sloan Kettering as an in-network provider for any of its individual plans. Please confirm eligibility with your insurance carrier. 

Other Coverage Options

We have agreements with several insurance companies that may provide additional coverage for cancer patients. These benefit programs include:

  • AXA Assistance USA
  • Beech Street
  • Integrated Health Plans
  • National Health Administrators
  • National Preferred Provider Network
  • UnitedHealthcare's Cancer Resource Services
  • United Resource Network
  • Veterans Choice Program
Oxford

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with Oxford’s Freedom and Liberty plans as well as the Metro Plan (which is only offered to small business groups and no longer offered as individual plans). Please confirm with your insurance if you need a one-time referral. Note: Oxford’s Medicare Managed Care plan — Secure Horizon — does not include Memorial Sloan Kettering as an in-network provider. Oxford does not include us in any of the plans you can buy through the insurance exchanges.

World Trade Center Health Program

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with the World Trade Center Health Program.

QualCare

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with QualCare's PPO and HMO/POS network.

Specialty Care Management

Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Specialty Care Management.

TRICARE

Hospital and physician services may be covered by TRICARE. Please call your TRICARE plan to confirm coverage at Memorial Sloan Kettering.

UnitedHealthcare

Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with UnitedHealthCare's HMO, POS, and PPO plans. Please confirm with your insurance if a one-time referral is needed.

UnitedHealthCare's Medicare Managed Care plan does not include Memorial Sloan Kettering as an in-network provider.

United does not include us in any of the plans you can buy through the insurance exchanges.

Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by UnitedHealthcare.

Contact and Location

Find a Convenient Location

Memorial Sloan Kettering has locations throughout New York City, Long Island, New Jersey, and Westchester. These locations offers many services, including screening, chemotherapy, and medical testing.

See all locations

About Me

Education

MPH, Harvard University School of Public Health; MD, Columbia University Medical School

Residencies

Internal Medicine, Brigham and Women’s Hospital

Fellowships

Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Board Certifications

Internal Medicine; Medical Oncology

I am a medical oncologist specializing in the diagnosis, treatment, and management of gastrointestinal (GI) cancers with a particular emphasis on lower GI tract tumors, which include rectal, colon, and anal cancer. In the 20-plus years that I have cared for patients with these types of cancers, I have had the privilege to be a member of teams that have conducted foundational trials that have improved outcomes so that patients are living not only longer, but also better. Currently, I am the leader of a large national trial that seeks to streamline and personalize the way we treat patients with locally advanced rectal cancer. I am especially focused on optimizing care by collaborating with surgeons, radiologists, radiation oncologists, and pathologists to improve patient outcomes. I am inspired and motivated by the tremendous progress that has been made since the 1990s. Patients with advanced colorectal cancer are now able to survive with good quality of life for extended periods. This progress was achieved through intensive partnerships, team science, and including patients as partners in the design of research trials. My goal is to accelerate progress using this approach.

My training in medicine and medical oncology began at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, and I launched my career at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center as a member of the Gastrointestinal Oncology Service. From 2008 to 2021, I practiced medical oncology in the GI oncology group at Dana-Farber and was a Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. In 2021, I returned to MSK to serve as Chair of the Department of Medicine. Although I dedicate considerable energy to leadership in academic medicine, caring for patients has always been my primary source of inspiration. I remain connected to my patients and their families across the country and am motivated by the journeys of those who succumbed to cancer and those who have been cured or are living with advanced cancer.

I am a strong proponent of making cancer care options transparent to patients by ensuring that they are equipped with all of the knowledge necessary to make informed choices at every step. I am the architect of systems to engage patients in reporting on how they feel and function during cancer treatment and of initiatives to make electronic health records and clinical trials open and accessible. My approach is to partner with my patients and their families to help them understand the array of treatment options and to develop a customized treatment plan that leverages the most up-to-date scientific knowledge. My research focuses on ensuring that the discoveries in the laboratory translate from research to reality to achieve maximum benefit and public health impact. I am a firm believer that by enhancing the way that care is delivered, we can achieve better outcomes for more patients.

Awards and Honors

  • Fellow of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (2013)
  • Member of the National Cancer Policy Forum
  • Associate Editor, Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA)
  • Boston magazine: Top Doctors (2016-2021)
  • Exceptional Women in Medicine (2019-2020)
  • Association of American Physicians (AAP): Elected member (2016)
  • Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology: Richard L. Schilsky Achievement Award (2016)
  • Castle Connolly: Regional Top Doctor (2013-present)

Colleagues

Doctors at Memorial Sloan Kettering work as teams, with specialists from all different areas. This allows us to consider all your needs together, and to give you the best possible care.

See all Gastrointestinal Oncology Service doctors

Clinical Trials

Find a Clinical Trial for You

Memorial Sloan Kettering's doctors and scientists are constantly developing new treatments for cancer. MSK is typically running hundreds of clinical trials at a given time.

You may be able to participate in a clinical trial even if you are new to MSK. Search our online directory to find trial information and see more about who can participate.

Search clinical trials

Research and Publications

Publications on PubMed

Visit PubMed for a full listing of Dr. Schrag’s journal articles. Pubmed is an online index of research papers and other articles from the US National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health.

See all on PubMed